Economic and Societal Changes in China

July 17th, 2018 by

Economic and Societal Changes in China

Ever since Deng Xiaoping opened up the economic levers in China in the 1980s, Chinese society has fundamentally changed. Unquestionably, one of the most significant worldwide developments of the past 30 years has been the economic growth in China. Millions of Chinese have been lifted out of poverty. For the first time in its history, China has a huge middle class. The average per capita income for many people in China’s largest cities is roughly equivalent to the average income in Taiwan and South Korea.

By some estimates, by 2020, the Chinese middle class will outnumber the middle class in Europe. Nobel laureate economist, Robert Fogel, predicts that China’s economy will be 40 percent of global GDP by 2040.

Construction projects, high rise apartment buildings, gleaming airports and high speed rail trains are all part of China’s new landscape. But many of these changes have come at a price: pollution, inflation over six percent, food contamination and shoddy construction projects.

The family, once the cornerstone of Confusion teachings, appears to be changing. A generation of university-trained Chinese are no longer willing to take care of their aging parents and grandparents. Chinese “old age” or “old people” homes are crowded and new facilities continue to be built to meet demand.

Chinese university students are not immune to the economic and societal disruptions taking place in China today.

A university degree from a foreign institution, once considered a ticket to a comfortable middle class life in China, is no longer the case. According to Amanda Barry, the Chinese liaison director for the Australian National University, “The foreign degree isn’t the edge it used to be. Big employers in China go to job fairs of the top Chinese universities and can fill their graduate intake. They don’t need foreign graduates.”

Nor is a university degree a guarantee of a good paying job after graduation. According to an editorial in China Report, the average monthly salary of the 2017 Chinese college graduate decreased by 16 percent from 2016, to 4,014 yuan, or $590.  And the number of university graduates when surveyed who indicated they would pursue advanced degrees decreased from 21.3 percent in 2016 to 9.7 percent in 2017.

As Chinese society changes so will the realities and expectations of Chinese university students. As Chinese universities improve teaching and research and continue to climb in world rankings, more Chinese students will opt to stay and study in China where they can establish valuable contacts for future employment.

The implications for future Chinese international recruitment is obvious.  

 

Oh Canada!

June 19th, 2018 by

Oh Canada!

In my last blog I quoted statistics from the QS Applicant Survey 2018 revealing the shifts in international students’ preferences and mobility patterns. More than 16,000 prospective international students participated in the survey.

This blog will examine one country who appears to be gaining both in reputation, application and enrollment: Canada.

The Canadian government and higher education authority has set a goal of enrolling 450,000 students by 2022. In 2017 495,000 international students enrolled in Canadian colleges and universities, five years ahead of schedule. The numbers reflect a 20 percent increase over the previous year.

Canada ranks number three as a top study destination for international students, after the United States and the United Kingdom.

Higher education is the fourth largest export in the Canadian economy and supports 170,000 jobs throughout the country.

Enrollments from China increased 28 percent and Indian enrollments increased by 25 percent. Enrollments from Vietnam and Iran also increased. Applications from Africa, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe to date this year should reflect strong enrollments from these regions in the fall term.

President of the Canadian Bureau for International Education, President Karen McBride: “Our research shows that international students choose Canada because of the quality of the Canadian education system and our reputation as a safe and tolerant country.”

I would also add that the Canadian government, in concert with Canadian colleges and universities, created a strategic international marketing plan. When you request information on studying in particular school in Canada, you first get the reasons why you should study in Canada. And last year the Canadian government opened seven new visa centers in China to meet the growing demand from Chinese students to study in Canada. Finally, the Canadian government has implemented generous employment opportunities for international students after graduation.

QS Market Insights manager Dasha Karzunina put it best: Student mobility patterns are “on the precipice of transformation.” International student enrollment in Canadian schools is one indication of this transformation.

 

What are the best countries to study In ?

June 5th, 2018 by

What are the best countries to study In ?

In March 2018 the 2018 QS Applicant Survey Report published the results of a global survey of study abroad students and the preferred countries of internationally mobile students.

The survey revealed the following:

While the United States and the United Kingdom remain the preferred study destinations, the survey results also revealed that both countries are losing market share to other destinations, especially Canada, Germany and Australia.

The “Trump Effect” and Brexit appear to be key (negative) factors in student preferences.

Countries offering classes in English and with low tuition or scholarship programs (like Germany) have experienced increased applications from international students.

The United States has received fewer applicants from students in several countries in the Middle East. The reasons are well known to anyone reading this article or newspapers.

For the first time, China emerged at the eighth most popular international student destination. This is a reflection, among other reasons, of the significant scholarships awarded to students in countries in China’s Belt and Road initiative.

Key factors influencing student application preferences include:

Cost

Career preparation and employability

Personalized service and

Safety

There are other trends affecting international student mobility worth noting:

Southeast and East Asia are increasingly popular among international students.

Key factors include:

Low tuition and living costs

Proximity to home

English language courses and

Improvement in rankings

While these surveys reflect a point in time, March 2018, I think it safe to predict that when international student enrollments are reported in the fall, these statistics will hold and reflect the changes in international student preferences and mobility patterns. I don’t think this is a one-year phenomena. There is ample data to suggest that these changes have been occurring “sub rosa” for quite some time.

 

Is this the college/university of the future?

May 22nd, 2018 by

Is this the college/university of the future?

College Campus

In my last blog I listed some of the characteristics of the college/university students of the future. This blog will focus on the college/university in the future.

 

The college/university in the future will:

Merge with another college or university

Offer combined degrees with other national and international colleges and universities

Incorporate technology into all facets of learning, including active learning classrooms, data analytics, predictive analytics, student success planning systems, streamed videos and blogs

Offer virtual reality recruitment tours to re-place in-person admission tours

Create web-based platforms to provide admission deans with real-time information on the students likely to enroll

Incorporate artificial intelligence into all facets of the academy and administrative functions

Recognize competency-based credits

Participate in the alternative credit program created by the American Council on Education

Partner with area companies and businesses to offer online courses

Offer online and classroom instruction year-round

Replace lecture halls with study labs

Incorporate technology into educational delivery, including streamed videos and blogs

Enroll fewer international students on campus but more online

Participate in the University Innovation Alliance to graduate more students at lower costs

Create new transcripts that will list students’ competencies, in addition to courses

Hire a Chief Innovation officer

Re-structure administrative functions to create synergy and collapse entrenched silos

In 2005 I wrote a book, Ten Trends in Higher Education. This is what I predicted 13 years ago:

Higher education providers will become more numerous and more diverse

Students will study year-round

Telecommunication options will become standard practice, with students taking classes at home, on campus, everywhere, anytime

Technological capabilities will encourage the rise of global universities

Women, minorities and adult learners will dominate higher education enrollments

Federal and state funding for higher education will decrease

Asian students will overtake European students on American colleges and universities

The United States will continue to lose market share of international students

International students will opt to study closer to home

The United States will compete with several other countries for the international student market

Traditional colleges will not disappear but they will change organizationally and will be managed differently

College credits will include credits from MOOC courses, AP courses and IB courses

The fall and spring semesters will be relics of the past

Students will have transcripts from more than one school

Colleges and universities will partner with businesses to meet the needs of the changing global economy

While it is foolish to predict the future, I think you would agree that most of the predictions I made in 2005 are reality in 2018.

Perhaps the same will be true of the predictions I made in this article?

Is this the colleege/university student of the future?

May 8th, 2018 by

Is this the college/university student of the future?

“Painting a vision with words carries the argument.”    C.S. Lewis

 

I don’t know if I will succeed in convincing you, the reader, that college and university students of the future will be very different from what they are today, but I shall try.

The U.S. college/university student in the future will be:

“Phigital”

Older and female

 Hispanic and Asian

Attend school closer to home

Learn in study labs, not lecture halls

Learn using podcasts, blogs, and streamlined videos

Attend several schools and have multiple transcripts

Graduate with a double major

Graduate with stackable credentials

Enroll in schools with robust career counseling programs, job placements at graduation and manageable debt levels

Take courses online and on-campus

Take at least one Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)

Attend classes year-round

Study abroad either in the summer or for one semester

Participate in at least one internship program

Graduate with stackable credentials

Have multiple transcripts listing competencies

Lifelong learners

Take certificate and continuing education courses after graduation

 

I don’t know if the picture I have attempted to paint with the words in this article has convinced you that the college student of tomorrow, and by extension, the college and university of the future, will be different from what it is today. But I tried.

My next blog will attempt to define the college and university of the future. Stay tuned.